Cover Image: The Exiles

The Exiles

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Member Reviews

In 19th century London, Evangeline, a governess to an influential family, finds herself in Newgate Prison after becoming pregnant by her employer’s son. She is going to be transported to a penal colony in Australia. On board the ship transporting her to her now home, Evangeline befriends, Hazel, a midwife and herbalist. When they arrive in Australia, they are confronted with the fact that the British government has relocated many of the native people, whom they consider savages. And Evangeline meets a young woman named Mathinna, the daughter of a murdered local Chief who has been adopted by the governor of the penal colony. The story of these three young women, found guilty of nothing more than being female, poor and different strike up remarkable friendship that lights up the pages of this book with incandescent wonder
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Lovely. Just lovely. I need to do research about the female inmates going to Australia. I had no clue. I could have read for hours about this topic. Well done!
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I was so excited to have received an advanced copy of this as Christina Baker Kline is one of my favorite authors. Once again she has created a literary sensation. Ive noticed that there is not a lot of contemporary historical fiction set in Australia, so I was thrilled to read about both the plight of prisoners exiled from England, as well as the aboriginal people. Kline is an exquisite writer who paints pictures of both the well-drawn characters and the harsh settings, which include the portrayal of the brutal conditions of both the English and Australian prisons, as well as the hardships the prisoners faced on the former slave ship as they journey from England to the prison colony known today as Tasmania. Kline has obviously done extensive research and has turned it into what will be a huge 2020 hit in the historical fiction genre..
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The author has found, and saved, children in every book she’s written that I’ve read. Evangeline, Hazel, Olive, and Mathinna represent the women I most like to know about. In other words, a wronged governess, a folk midwife/herbalist, a tough criminal (with heart of gold) and coming-of-age aboriginal girl live and survive in my favorite literary country, Australia/Tasmania. But wait, plot twist a third of the way through…and Ruby arrives. I would recommend this title to anyone with a heart and an interest in little known historical injustices brought to life.
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Orphan Train changed my life, I also enjoyed her other books.

Searching for a book to read during quarantine, saw this - had to read!

I got to travel back to 1840...
got to meet:
* Evangeline - accused of a crime she did not commit; 
changing her and turning her life in a complete new direction
* Mathinna - a collection masterpiece for someone's museum of native artifacts,
-to further study native life in Australia
*Hazel - a young woman with a knowledge before her time and years
--then and now called "Old Wives' Tales" for using garlic, vinegar, such.
She used arnica for pain!!

I got completely invested in this story, I felt for the characters, I had to keep reading to the last word.

Another good read!!
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I have read books before about the transport of convicts to penal colonies in Australia.  Interesting take on the women who were transported in this new book.  I enjoyed Orphan Train by this author,  this new book by author is just as well done.  For a quick historical read, this met my expectations.
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